Saturday, December 06, 2008

A day in Firenze

Yesterday I had a doctor's appointment in Firenze and even though it's less than a hundred miles from my house, I thought I'd make the ecological choice and go by train. In two words: total disaster. This doctor charges a lot so I wanted to make sure I got there on time. Since Italian trains are notorious for being late I decided I would leave early and just walk around town. When I got up in the morning it was pouring rain. I got out the super huge umbrella and headed to the train station. I had forgotten that this weekend was the Immaculate Conception Holiday and that everybody would be traveling. I couldn't find a seat going there and in the end just hopped a train and stood the 50 minute ride to Firenze. On the way back the only seat I could find was on a train that was leaving two hours after my appointment. Initially I started to get all anxious about the time I was wasteing, about the work I had to do. But in the end there was really nothing I could do about it. So I decided not to get upset about it and just pretend it was my day off.

When I arrived I was intent on finding a place to have a sandwich with Schiacciata bread, but I couldn't find a bar that was smiling at me. Do you know what I mean? One that has that perfect lighting and atmosphere, not too many people in it. A place where you can just soak up the surroundings. Then I came upon what looked like a restaurant, but it also had sandwiches on the menu. So I stepped in, out of the rain, and found myself in a nice space. I ended up sitting down at a beautifully set table for one, and ordering BaccalĂ  served in a tomato sauce with chickpeas and a bottle of mineral water. Sometimes I forget that I'm a grown up person and can actually treat myself once in awhile.

After the appointment I went window shopping, just wandering around for an hour. I lived in Firenze for 15 years and it's always nice and nostalgic for me to go there. When it was time to head back towards the train station I decide first to have a look at the Ponte Vecchio at dusk, and then stop for a coffee and pastry.

I read on the train the whole way back. That in itself was a vacation!


anji said...

Glad you took the day to yourself, sounds like it was good for the most part!

Have you heard of the book, Eat, Pray and Love? The american author spent a few months in italy learning italian... and, I think it's one you'd enjoy :)

Hope your appointment well well!


Steve Stenzel said...

Glad you got to treat yourself!!